S&T ‘gold’ team wins underground mine rescue event

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On October 5, 2012

For the first time since 1988, a team of Missouri University of Science and Technology students has won the underground mine rescue competition held at Missouri S&T’s Experimental Mine.

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Missouri S&T is one of the few universities in the nation to have a student mine rescue team. The team competes against industry mine rescue squads.

Missouri S&T’s Gold Team finished in first place in the underground rescue event, which is part of the annual Mine Rescue Competition held every fall at Missouri S&T. This year’s event was held Thursday, Oct. 4.

The student team competed against 12 teams from industry and another S&T squad, which finished 10th in the underground event.

Missouri S&T is one of the few universities in the nation that instructs mining engineering students in hands-on mine rescue techniques. The university also has its own experimental mine, where students can test their skills in a realistic environment. When the students graduate and enter the mining industry, they take what they’ve learned with them.

“We’re very proud of the students and for their dedication to demonstrating the importance of mine safety,” says Dr. Samuel Frimpong, chair of the mining and nuclear engineering department at Missouri S&T. “Their performance in this annual event serves as a tremendous testimony to the emphasis Missouri S&T places on preparing our students for meaningful and important careers in industry.”

The annual Mine Rescue Competition is held at Missouri S&T’s Experimental Mine, which is located on Bridge School Road in Rolla. The mine has been named one of Popular Science magazine’s “awesome college labs” for three years in a row.

During the competition, teams are evaluated on how they handle a simulated disaster situation underground. The events are set up and judged by representatives of the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration.

The teams are rated on how well they follow the basic rules and regulations of the underground rescue problem, and they are graded on written exams. Mine rescue competitions also feature tests involving first aid and maintaining self-contained breathing gear.

In addition to winning the underground portion of the event, the S&T Gold Team won the in-state trophy for performing best in the underground event among all six Missouri teams in the competition. The Gold Team also finished in fifth place overall, while the other S&T squad, known as the Black Team, finished 12th. A team from Doe Run Co. finished first overall in the event.

Members of the Missouri S&T Gold Team are:

  • Casey Slaughter of Rolla, Mo., a graduate student in mining engineering and the team captain.
  • Jake Morris of Rockville, Md., the team gas person.
  • Eric Wesel of Marietta, Ohio, a junior in mining engineering and the team map person.
  • Katie Sewester of Viola, Kan., a junior in mining engineering and the team first aid person.
  • Drew Krump of Columbia, Ill., a senior in mining engineering and the team co-captain.
  • David Stine of Carbondale, Ill., a senior in mining engineering and the team fresh air base coordinator.
  • Spencer Evans of Eldon, Mo., a senior in mining engineering and the team fresh air base assistant.
  • Dana Resmini of Rochester, Mass., a junior in mining engineering and the team cable puller.

Members of the Missouri S&T Black Team are:

  • Robert Meier of Vienna, Mo., a senior in mining engineering and the team captain.
  • Robert Florich of St. Louis, Mo., a junior in mining engineering and the team gas person.
  • Jordan Verslues of Rocheport, Mo., a junior in mining engineering and the team map person.
  • Ashley Nuhn of Steelville, Mo., a senior in mining engineering and the team first aid person.
  • Tee Galbraith of St. Louis, Mo., a sophomore in mining engineering and the team co-captain.
  • Gregor Weber of Ballwin, Mo., a senior in mining engineering and the team fresh air base coordinator.
  • Holden Henry of Ellington, Mo., a sophomore in mining engineering and the team fresh air base assistant.
  • Daykin Schnell of Lincoln, Neb., a sophomore in mining engineering and the team cable puller.

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